Thanks to its proximity to Lisbon’s Port and Old Ship Yard, Santos was historically an industrial area with very few residential options. Yet since being dubbed the Santos Design District in 2005, the riverside neighborhood has evolved into a beacon for art enthusiasts and designers, who live and work side-by-side.
In recent years, the shabby-chic area has stepped into the spotlight as Lisbon’s epicenter of cool and is playing a pivotal part in the city’s regeneration story. Home to a kaleidoscope of artists, designers, architects – check out Paris-Sete, AR interiores, Re-Use and Roche Bobois – it is a playground for work and play for the city’s creatives. Its emergence on the residential property scene is also recent, offering a provocative combination of old-world charm and forward-thinking new builds, such as Santon Design. A predominantly middle class area, the streets bustle with creativity and commerce by day and trendy partygoers by night.
An epicentre for galleries, studios, design outlets, restaurants and bars, Santo is home to IADE, ETIC and UAL, Lisbon’s leading design colleges, as well as number of other large advertising and design businesses. Despite very limited public transport in this small neighbourhood, the majority of places are accessible on foot and connected to the rest of the city by a strong network of buses and trams. 30 minutes to the beach, 30 minutes to the airport, Santos is well located next to the River Tagus, which makes for a perfect for an early morning run along its banks.
The Property Market in Lisbon
Having come out of economic struggle in 2010, the real estate market in Portugal has seen a consistent rise. The price of property for sale in Lisbon increased by 4.9% between 2017 and 2018. Portugal and Lisbon alike have excellent housing markets, which generally tend to offer good value for money. Because of this, Portugal has the highest owner-occupation rate, with nearly 70% of the population owning their homes.
Unlike many European capitals that have become nearly unaffordable, Lisbon allows individuals to buy a house in central and prime locations, making an ideal property investment. A large proportion of foreign investors are French and Scandinavian, who have made Lisbon their second home. They, along with others, benefit from the low taxes and low-cost of living in the city.